The Hipster Generation, Social Justice, and Orphans

The potential to impact the lives of millions of orphaned children is huge when you look at the passion of those in the 18-34 year old generation.
Singles like Renee and Katie have moved overseas to spend their lives serving the fatherless.
Artists like Aaron Ivey and Steven Bush are using their gifts to raise awareness.
An increasing number of couples in this age bracket are stepping out in faith to adopt even when they can have biological children.

Along these lines, Adam Smith writes a telling column about the 18-34 year old “hipster” generation in Relevant titled, Who Are We Trying to Impress? Here’s a choice section that makes me thankful for the ones I mentioned above who are really making a difference, inspiring others, and don’t care who they impress.

Our generation, the 18-to-34 set, tend to share a common characteristic. We are remarkably self-satisfied. We are socially aware, politically sensitive and culturally savvy, and we like this about ourselves. The question it raises, however, is if all our sensitivity, savviness and awareness has led anywhere. Certainly, social justice campaigns abound within our generation. One would be loathe to be identified within the subculture without a keen passion for grassroots, countercultural movements. However, where have these movements led? Is ours a generation that is quietly changing the world, or is social conscience just one more accoutrement of fashion for us? An accessory we wear with our Chuck Taylors and horn-rimmed glasses? It seems we’re out not just to change the world, but to impress. The question is, who exactly are we trying to impress?

Of course, one can’t take an entirely pessimistic view of our generation. Many of us are involved in amazing, world-changing endeavors. As a generation, we tend to be remarkably tech-savvy, relish working in teams, show amazing talent at multi-tasking and celebrate diversity. It’s a powerful pastiche that lends us the possibility to do remarkable things and—perhaps more than any other generation—see our world changed in practical and lasting ways. There are 75 million of us, and we have at our fingertips a world connected in such a way that we have more opportunity to impact the globe than at any other epoch of world history. Many of us are doing just that. Groups like Invisible Children, Blood:Water Mission and Kiva have harnessed the passion we feel for justice and the enormous potential provided by technology to make a tangible difference in society and culture.

However, what is troubling is the veneer we often put on our efforts and our culture. We seem so intent upon creating an impressive display of cultural and political awareness that the culture and politics we tout become secondary to the style in which we tout them. When our love of music becomes a race to beat each other with knowledge of obscure bands, we’ve lost our love of music. When our political engagement boils down to who has the best screen-printed swag, we’re not engaging politics. When our passion for social justice isn’t coupled with actual knowledge of the issues we’re fighting for, it’s just posturing. Once again, who are we trying to impress?

Read the whole article here.

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